By Aaron Klein
On the very day Israel and Hamas agreed to a prisoner exchange, Hamas took a formal decision to kidnap more Israeli soldiers, according to a top leader of the Islamist group’s so-called military wing.
Abu Abdullah, of Hamas’ Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, told KleinOnline that last Thursday, Hamas “military wing” appointed a new team to draft plans to kidnap more Israeli soldiers in the future.
Last Thursday, Israel and Hamas reached a deal, finalized this past Sunday, for the release of Gilad Shalit, kidnapped by Hamas in 2006, in exchange for the freedom of some 1,027 Palestinian terrorists in Israeli jails.
On Tuesday, the deal was carried out, with Shalit now back in Israel.
On Sunday, KleinOnline reported the chief of Hamas in the Gaza Strip stated in an interview the exchange emboldens his group to kidnap more Israelis to extract further concessions from the Jewish state.
Mahmoud al-Zahar was asked in a radio interview whether the exchange demonstrates value in nabbing Israeli soldiers.
The Hamas chieftain replied: “Then Palestinian Authority in Ramallah negotiated for many years and they failed to release anybody. Now by the kidnapping (of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit) and the release, the Palestinian people succeeded to set free this number (of prisoners) by this way.”
He continued, “I think it’s good for the Israelis to think thoroughly solve the problem smoothly and not to give a chance for the repetition of this event. It is wise for the Israelis to schedule the release of the rest of the Palestinians.”